Rachel Smith graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA (Hons) in Geography before going on to complete her PGCE in Secondary Geography Teaching. Once qualified, Rachel began her teaching career at Temple Moor High School in 2008. During her time at Temple Moor, Rachel worked for the Post 16 team, firstly as a Head of Year before taking on the role of Acting Head of Sixth Form. She then moved into the Teaching and Learning team where she coached staff, planned and delivered whole school CPD and ultimately progressed to become Assistant Principal for Teaching and Learning.
Alongside her first years of teaching, Rachel completed her Masters in Teaching at the University of Leeds in 2011. Graduating with a distinction, she was then asked to lead seminars to subsequent cohorts of masters students on cooperative learning and conducting high quality educational action research.
As a passionate geographer, Rachel moved to the White Rose Academies Trust for the opportunity to apply her teaching and learning experience to develop the Geography departments across the WRAT. More recently, Rachel became Curriculum Lead for Humanities and Social Sciences, with the ambition to make the team the flagship of the academy. The success of the team was recognised as an example of best practice in the most recent monitoring review.
Away from work, Rachel is a keen runner and can often be found at a Parkrun on a Saturday morning.
From September 2019, Rachel will lead the strategic action plan for staff retention and development. In her new role as Vice Principal (Executive Director of Professional and Organisational Development). In addition, throughout the academic year, Rachel will support the Principal of Leeds West Academy with a range of key projects.